Cut red tape for special needs staff

17th January 2003 at 00:00
I have a straightforward suggestion to "improve teacher workload" for special educational needs co-ordinators. Abolish the "school action" and "school action plus" stages of the special needs code of practice.

As a special needs co-ordinator in a Cornish comprehensive with more than its fair share of pupils with special needs I find that these two stages, and the bureaucracy that goes with them, add nothing to the education of pupils. They just add to the workload of me and my team of excellent assistants. Individual education plans in particular are a time-consuming burden rather than an aid to learning.

It is no longer a requirement to have a special needs register or record of need in school (SEN code of practice November 2001) so why maintain this administrative task? It would not stop my colleagues and me delivering the best learning environment that we can. Most secondary Sencos I have spoken to agree, so why must we plod on.

Let's use existing systems of assessing, reporting and target-setting for all pupils. I don't think that anyone, except the people who sit down and create these educational ideas in the first place, is interested in IEPs and these two stages. What do you all think? Is it me?

Robert Barratt 4 Riverside Court Quay Street Lostwithiel, Cornwall Hot Data, 30

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